Home Month and Year August 2022 Parker’s Pen – August 2022

Parker’s Pen – August 2022

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David Parker

At a reception in the Dialog office, I was taken aback by three powerful and very colourful works of art on display and pleased to find they were by a student of the National accessArts Centre.

NaAC president and CEO, JS Ryu was on hand to brag about the pieces that were recently displayed at the Canadian Embassy on Tokyo, and I asked how his new building was progressing.

It’s been over a year since the announcement was made that the organization was thrilled to be moving into the former Boy Scout’s Hall looking across to the Bow River from Brownsea Road N.W. His blunt response was, “No progress, we have been stymied by City Hall.”

Actually, the problem stems from the by-the-book rigidity of the heritage people who feel they have to preserve the concrete steps of the original design (circa 1960s) leading up to the entrance.

NaAC is obviously an organization for those with some form of disability who might have a tough time mounting the long flight of stairs. An answer has been given for a separate, second entrance, but surely the students deserve the dignity of being able to use their own front door.

And remembering the building’s architect, the late Jack Long, I’m quite sure he would have no problem tearing the steps down and constructing a new pathway to the centre that has a waiting list of students eager to participate in its great programs.

Rules are meant to adhered to – broken or scrapped when necessary.

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It’s such a good feeling to be back to what some said would never be normal again. Hopefully we would have experienced a great Stampede by the time this is read, but just to see people enjoying sunshine between showers on patios is encouraging.

At the top of those destinations appears to be the one on the south side of The District at Beltline on 12th Avenue S.E. called Central Taps.

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A city committee has given a passing grade to a new traffic calming policy.

Traffic calming – translation ‘driver frustration’.

Seems to me that streets were designed for vehicular traffic, sidewalks were made for pedestrians, and parks for playing in and family get-togethers.

Now, it’s not just about slowing traffic but creating active spaces for residents to better utilize streets.

Where necessary, speed limits are posted and all I expect will be drivers becoming more and more frustrated having to drive through (their own) communities with yet more barriers. And that in itself could be dangerous.

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And on the subject of driving, I still pull up alongside far too many people with their heads down, texting while waiting at traffic lights.

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I don’t normally do book reviews but wanted to alert anyone who hails from the southern parts of Saskatchewan or Manitoba about Bean Fate.

Based on true crime, it tells the tale of the 1922 murder in the border town of Bienfait, and life in and around Estevan at the time of the illicit liquor trade.

Also factual are some of the characters including the Bronfman brothers Harry, Sam and Allan, Al Capone, Dutch Schultz and former Mayor of Chicago, ‘Big Bill’ Thompson.

The author of this fast-moving fiction is James Arnett who grew up in Winnipeg and became president of Molson and chair of Beaver Lumber and the Montreal Canadiens.

Enjoy.

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Final words: “Give every day the chance to be the most beautiful in your life.” – Mark Twain

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